ATHENS HILLS SUMMER CSA:
Well, almost all of the greenhouses have been switched over to their winter season outfits of greens and salad mix. The hot house is almost ready to be planted and after that is finished we will be ready to batten down the hatches as they say. We will soon need to fasten the sidewalls to the bottoms of the houses and patch any holes in the walls, but compared to transitioning the beds, that’s a piece of cake.
We’ve had some very autumnal weather over the last few days, and this morning while we were harvesting most of us were reminded of what the cold weather means for our hands. It is amazing how quickly one’s fingers freeze up making cutting salad mix for instance a slow endeavor. I suppose this makes us quickly appreciate the warmth of the sunshine when it accompanies us out in the fields during these late months of the year. Today was one of those days and we quickly warmed up as the morning progressed.
I hope that you all are enjoying these changes in season, and I hope that the recipes I’ve included this week remind you of the changes in food we go through with the transition from one season to another. Have a great week!
PS: As we near the end of the Summer ’08 CSA season, remember that we appreciate your feedback. Your comments, suggestions, questions, etc. have helped us over the past few years to make our CSA better and better. We would like to continue to improve and we can only do that with your help, so please send us an email, give us a call or write us a letter and let us know what you have thought about your experience so far. Thanks for your support this season and we hope to see you again for our Winter 2009 CSA.
Salad Mix (The salad mix is still doing well and we’ve begun planting the next round of lettuces in the greenhouses for the winter. It is truly wonderful to have these greens fresh throughout the year!)
Mushrooms (By now you are familiar with our fungi. Let everyone know what you’ve been up to in the kitchen with them by submitting your favorite mushroom recipe on the blog.)
Tomatoes (This may be the last week for these tasty summertime staples. Savor their flavor on your next salad or with your next bowl of pasta and remember that tang and promise of warmth when late winter comes around.)
Arugula (Try the delicious recipe that one of your fellow members recommended for this newsletter—thanks to Patti for submitting this great and easy idea.)
Green Peppers (If you want to savor their flavor this winter, chop or slice the peppers, place in a Ziploc and store in the freezer.)
Eggplant (With the last of these purple gems, why not use them for a lovely appetizer by making some delicious baba ganoush that you can dip your crunchy radish quarters in as you wait for dinner.)
Radishes (These pretty, crunchy & yummy treats make a wonderful side dish sautéed in butter with some minced onion & garlic—try it, I bet you’ll like it.)
Cilantro (I love this herb! It makes all the difference in a Spanish dish, Indian cooking & in your last batch of salsa—enjoy!)
Recipe: Corn Radish Salad with
(Halve this recipe to use the amount of radishes included in this share.)
4 ears of sweet corn,husked & silk removed
10-12 radishes, thinly sliced
½ C. thinly sliced, or small-diced red onion
½ to ¾ C. coarsely chopped cilantro leaves
½ to 1 jalapeño chile pepper, seeded & coarsely chopped
3 Tbs. fresh lime juice
3 tsp. honey
3 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
½ tsp. coarse sea salt
Cut the corn kernels from the ears cutting off the stem end to give a flat base. Place the corn kernels in a large bowl. Add the sliced radishes, chopped onion and cilantro. Set aside.
In a blender puree the jalapeño, lime juice, honey and olive oil. Add this mixture to the bowl with the corn kernels. Season to taste with the salt.
Refrigerate the salad until approximately ½ hour before serving. Taste for seasonings and serve cold or at room temperature.
(Recipe courtesy of the website What’s Cooking America, 2008.)
Recipe: Cavatelli with Arugula and Tomatoes (Cavatelli Alla Rucola E Pomodorini) (Serves 6)
3 C. (about 1 pound) ripe tomatoes
1 tsp. coarse sea salt or kosher salt, or to taste, plus more for the pasta pot
¼ C. extra virgin olive oil, plus more for finishing
4 plump garlic cloves, sliced
¼ tsp. peperonchino flakes, or to taste
1 lb. cavatelli, or other pasta
1 lb. fresh, tender arugula, rinsed and drained
½ C. freshly grated Canestrato Pugliese or Pecorino Romano
Cut the tomatoes into ½-inch chunks to have 3 cups of cut-up fresh tomatoes. Start heating 6 quarts water with 1 tablespoon of salt in a large pot.
In a big skillet, heat the ¼ cup of olive oil, sliced garlic, peperonchino over medium-high heat, stirring until the garlic is sizzling and starting to color. Pour in the chopped tomatoes, season with a teaspoon of salt, and bring to a bubbling simmer. Cook, stirring frequently, for 3 or 4 minutes, just until the tomatoes have softened a bit and the juices are slightly thickened. Turn off the heat.
When the pasta water is boiling, stir in the cavatelli or other pasta. Return to the boil and cook for 7 to 8 minutes (or 6 minutes less than the time indicated on the package), then drop all of the arugula into the pot. Stir well, cover and bring the water back to the boil rapidly. Cook pasta and arugula together for 5 minutes, or until the pasta is nearly al dente.
Meanwhile bring the cut tomatoes in the skillet back to a simmer. Lift out the pasta and cooked greens with a spider, drain for a moment, then drop into the skillet. Cook on high heat, stirring continuously, until the pan juices have thickened and nicely coat the pasta. Turn off the heat, sprinkle the grated cheese over the pasta and toss. Drizzle on more olive oil, toss, and serve immediately in warm bowls.
(Recipe courtesy of Lidia’s Italy, 2007, at the suggestion of one of our members Patti R.)
Recipe: Chicken Curry Soup (Serves 4)
1 onion, chopped
2 tsp. fresh ginger, minced
2 Tbs. mustard seeds
1 Tbs. curry powder
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 C. chicken broth
1 potato, diced
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 (14oz) can coconut milk
3 Tbs. cornstarch
1 (10oz) package of frozen peas
¼ C. fresh cilantro, chopped
In a 5-quart pan, combine the onion, ginger, mustard seeds and ¼ cup water. Stir often over medium-high heat until the onion is tinged with brown, 5 to 7 minutes (pan bottom will become dark brown during this process). Add curry powder and stir for about 30 seconds.
Add potato, chicken broth and bell pepper to the pan; stir to release the brown bits. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
Cut up the chicken into 1-inch cubes, add to the simmering soup and cook an additional 10 minutes.
In a bowl, blend a little of the coconut milk with the cornstarch until smooth, then add the remaining coconut milk. Stir the mixture into the soup. Add the peas and simmer for about 10 minutes.
Ladle the curry into bowls and garnish with the cilantro.
(Recipe courtesy of Jean R. & the website Recipe Zaar, 2008.)